A 21-year-old woman will spend almost four years in a federal prison for her part in the killing of Langley’s Marc Bontkes.
Bontkes’ parents, siblings and other loved ones filled nearly two rows of a B.C. Supreme courtroom in New Westminster to hear the judge’s sentence on Monday morning. The accused also had some family present. The room was very quiet as the judge read out his sentence.
Originally tried as a youth, the judge decided to impose an adult sentence for the woman, who was just shy of her 18th birthday at the time of the killing.
Despite being sentenced as an adult, a publication ban on the woman’s identity remains in place for 30 days, to allow her time to consider appealing her sentence.
She has spent 20 months behind bars since her arrest in July 2010. On Monday, the judge sentenced her to 72 months but credited her 30 months for time served (1.5 months for every month she has spent in jail) so she will spent 42 months behind bars.
She also has to submit a DNA sample and was given a 10-year firearms ban.
While listening to the judge’s lengthy reasons for sentencing, the accused, who wore dark-rimmed glasses, sometimes chewed on her nails but mostly looked towards the judge, expressionless.
On top of not being able to release her name, there is also a publication ban on the judge’s reasons for sentencing. This is because there is still a jury trial to come in Bontkes murder.
Three people were arrested and charged in his murder.
Roy Michael Thielen, 33, has already pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the case, as well as in the related killing of Laura Lynn Lamoureaux. He is serving a life sentence with no chance of parole for 20 years.
A third accused, Robert David Bradshaw, is expected to go on trial in September. He is charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
The young woman in court on Monday was initially charged with one count each of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. After working with both lawyers, she pleaded guilty to manslaughter in early February.
Crown prosecutor Christopher McPherson had asked for a sentence of between eight and 11 years. Her defence lawyer opposed an adult sentence and wanted a sentence of around two to four years.
Bontkes, 33, was found shot to death outside a parked mini-van in a parking lot of Hi-Knoll Park, on the Surrey-Langley border, on March 19, 2009.
His murder, as well as that of Lamoureaux’s, which took place just five days earlier, were related to the street-level drug trade, said police at the time.
Five days before Bontkes was killed, Lamoureaux, 36, was gunned down outside her apartment building in the early morning of March 14, 2009, at 50 Avenue and 202 Street. The woman in court on Monday was not charged in connection with Lamoureux’s murder.
Marc Bontkes founded Designmarc Homes, in Langley. He is the son of prominent Langley developer Robert Bontkes of Benchmark Group of Properties.
Bontkes wasn’t known to police, but his family later said he was doing hard drugs at the time of his murder. He left behind a wife and a young son.